One person living in the cloud

Computing is moving off my computer and to the cloud. Very complicated issue for a retiree. Computing in “the cloud” is different for every one. Changes revolve on ownership. The Cloud means we are in a digital community. Kinda like moving to a new place where we have different laws and rules. We need to redefine our existence. Practical problems - What do I need to own and what do I rent. I just tried to tried to find a copy of Microsoft Office 2019. Office 365 saves only to the cloud. If I want the document on my computer I save a "copy to my computer. Hard to accept. Can not save original to my computer. Noticed how hard it is to find software for me not the cloud. Looked at Amazon and can not find a single copy I can buy for my computer. We are shown many similiar items and NO difinitive answer for purchase. Asked other family members how they deal with this. They have a job or a school for the basic need software. As a retiree feel I am thrown to a mass of maybe software that might be what I need or maybe not. Strongly dislike how hard it is to find what I want on the web. Why must I comprise and guess or ask a professional how to buy basic office software from microsoft? thanks

If you have an Microsoft (Office) 365 subscription, you can download the desktop apps from the or from the Microsoft Store. If you’re running the web version of the Office apps, then yes, they will save to OneDrive and you need to download a copy.

Non-subscription versions of Office 2019 still exist for purchase, though most of the time it is a code for you to download the software.

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What exactly do you need the cloud for? Accessing the data on multiple devices? Or just as a backup?

If you save the files to OneDrive, they should sync to your device, so no need to copy. If you are using the free web apps, yes, they will only save to OneDrive, but OneDrive can be configured to sync locally.

If you are using Office 365 Personal or Home, you get the full Office applications and they do save locally, you just have to select the folder on the local computer as the destination.

Given the Max Schrems recent victory over the EU and the USA regarding Privacy Shield (and Standard Contract Clauses by association), because of the USA’s laissez-faire attitude to adhering to international treaties, the cloud is becoming harder and harder to use. I am currently looking at switching my cloud storage to a EU-only cloud provider and moving away from US based services.

(The US Government agreed to appoint a permanent ombudsman for EU data protection in 2015, the EU issued non-compliance notices in 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020. On top of that, the agreement stated that the data must be held to equivalent standards as in the EU, including data cannot be resold or passed onto third parties (including the US Government and its agents - i.e. NSA, DHS, CIA, FBI, police etc.) without the explicit written permission of the identifiable persons or without a valid EU court order). The US Government has failed to fulfil its part of the treaty on all counts, making it essentially illegal to use any cloud service to store data on that has ties to the USA.
Using US services, such as Amazon Store is a personal decision, can you accept that the US and Amazon won’t be bound by the data privacy laws that apply to your data? But if you store any data on US-tainted services, you are personally in breach of EU data protection laws, if you are storing PII - whether it be contact lists, correspondence or whatever - you are responsible for it, you responsibility isn’t transferred to the cloud service, so if they hand over the data to a third party (E.g. FBI), without first gaining permission from the people identified in the data, you are still responsible and could face prosecution. Therefore, as an EU citizen, the US Government has made the cloud very unattractive.)

Microsoft Office 2019 for home:

I have used Libre Office personally and in our small businesses since Libre Office forked from Open Office around 2011. I used Open Office before that. It has been great and I have never had an issue that I needed Microsoft Office in my work flow. And it is free! I do donate each year to support the project.

Libre Office programs are called Writer = Word and Calc = Excel Impress = Powerpoint etc. Depending on your use case this may suit you.

Libre Office saves in it’s own format as .odt but can easily be changed to save as a doc/docx etc if required as a one time thing or set to permanently save with your choice. Libre Office opens .doc .docx .xls documents. I have heard some people have compatibility issues when opening Microsoft documents but this has never happened to me that I remember. I would recommend giving it try to see if it suits you/your needs.


I have Office 365 Home (for my family) and from my experience - Office 365 saves to your Documents folder, which by default is a part of OneDrive. Yes, that syncs to the cloud, but it’s not necessarily the default setting. Again - from my experience.

However, I can definitely understand your frustration - Microsoft is not known for the clarity of their communications, so identifying the best solution can be difficult. My wife needed to purchase Outlook 2019 for her work (only Outlook - not the rest of Office), and found it on Amazon. I just did an Amazon search and found what appears to be a traditional install of Microsoft Office 2019

This may be what you are looking for.

Hope this helps.

Finally understand. Thanks all. I can save a single document at a time but the documents folder on my hard drive is actually in the cloud. I do not want my documents in the cloud so I deleted Microsoft 365 from my computer Still have access to onedrive but my docs are where I want them.:grin:

You can save in any folder on your local computer, the folder doesn’t have to be on OneDrive.

Edit: Just to add, we use O365 at work and we are not allowed to use OneDrive, all data has to be stored within the company firewall. There are no problems with this scenario, all data is stored on local network drives or the local drive, with OneDrive disabled.